When many people think of dog boots they often think of them as a fashion accessory. However, in reality, dog boots are often much more about functionality, convenience, and safety instead of simply making your already adorable pooch that little bit more adorable.
There’s a whole host of different ways that your dog’s life (and your life) can be improved by investing in a pair of dog boots. And as such, there are a wide range of different products on the market that are better suited to certain situations than others.
With that in mind today we are going to provide you with the ultimate buyer’s guide to dog boots. We’re going to look at why you’d need them, the different kinds available, and we’re going to provide several product recommendations that represent the best boots on the market in 2018.
Let’s get started.
3 Reasons To Use Dog Boots
Let’s start off by looking at some of the many different ways that dog boots can help you and your pooch.
Extreme heat is not something that dogs (or humans) particularly enjoy. Perhaps the worst bit about it is the super hot temperatures that sidewalks can reach when they are in direct sunlight. If it’s hot enough to cook an egg (which it is sometimes), then it’s far too hot for your dog’s paws.
Ideally, when your local area reaches these kinds of temperatures you won’t be walking your dog on the sidewalk at all. It’s always best to find some grass for them to play on as it’s going to be much cooler. But what if you don’t have access to grassy areas? Or what if there’s no way to get there without your dog walking on the sidewalk?
Dedicated heavy duty dog boots are designed for this specific purpose. They will shield your dog’s paws from the heat in the exact same way our human shoes do for us. You’ll be able to walk your dog on any sidewalk regardless of how hot it is.
Many dogs love playing in the snow, they don’t really care about how cold it feels on their feet. However, some older dogs may not enjoy it, at a certain time of life it can feel a little bit too much like hard work for them.
Dog boots can help in this situation by providing a waterproof layer between their paws and the snow. This enables dogs of any age to be out and about all year round without worrying about their paws.
However, it’s not just the temperature that’s the problem in the extreme cold, it’s the ice too. Dogs have a very hard time walking on ice, and slippage can often result in accidents. If you live in an area that’s prone to icing over, then dog boots can provide additional grip to ensure that your pooch stays safe.
Many dogs cannot deal with hardwood flooring. They can often slip and slide and scratch their way around the home while feeling like they are on an ice rink. This can potentially lead to injuries and accidents, and it can also destroy your floor. Dog boots can provide a certain level of grip in these situations to prevent slipping and sliding. It’s not an ideal situation, but it’s better than nothing.
The Different Types of Dog Boots
There are a wide variety of different kinds of dog boots on the market that meets the needs of the situations we mentioned above.
Dog boots that are designed to protect against heat are usually made from a reasonably thick material to insulate your pooch from the hot sidewalk. While they usually have some level of grip on them, it’s not considered to be essential (compared to other boots). Dog boots that are specifically dedicated for use in hot climates are often designed to be breathable to try and keep your dog’s feet as cool as possible, and as such, they are also rarely waterproof.
Snow boots and heat boots are generally very similar, in fact, many manufacturers design their products to be useful in both situations because of this. Again they will usually be made from a thick insulating material, but they will always have a significant amount of grip on them. Snow boots that are not designed for use in hot weather too will also often have various soft linings inside for additional insulation and warmth.
Rain boots are often the thinnest kind of dog boot on the market. They’re usually worn when there’s a wound on a dog’s paw that needs to stay clean. Some owners like to also use them for convenience to stop their dog from bringing mud into the house when it’s wet outside. Rain dog boots can often be semi-disposable because they’re so thin, but reusable products are not hard to find.
Hiking boots are designed to be worn when you’re taking a dog on a long trip in the great outdoors that might otherwise be a little bit too tough on their paws. The rough terrain and potentially sharp sticks, pine needles, and rocks can harm them. To solve this issue dog hiking boots are an option, they’re especially useful if your dog is a city dog that’s not really used to hiking.
They’re generally made of very thick rubber and are completely waterproof. They have large amounts of grip on them to avoid accidental slipping, and they’re usually secured tightly to the feet with a series of straps.
Fleece dog boots are mainly made for use indoors, but they can have limited outdoor use too. Primarily they’re used to stop dogs slipping and sliding on hardwood and PVC flooring. They’re usually designed like socks and have some form of grip on the bottom.
Overall Best Dog Boots: Kurgo Step & Strobe Dog Shoes
In our opinion, the overall best dog boots on the market in 2018 are these excellent boots from Kurgo. They’re pretty much an all in one boot that is suitable for use in a wide variety of situations and locations.
Wherever you and your pooch want to go, these boots will help you get there.
They are made from an extremely thick layer of rubber that provides exceptional insulation against the outside world. In very hot situations your dog will be able to walk on hot sidewalks without feeling anything at all. If you can walk on it, then so can they if they are wearing these boots.
At the same time, they are equally as good in super cold climates. They have a soft inner lining that insulates your dog’s feet from the extreme cold, and they are completely waterproof too. The incredible grip pads that are on the bottom of each boot are second to none. Honestly, there’s a good chance that your pooch is going to have better grip than you do.
While they’re suitable for use in hot and cold situations, these boots have actually been designed to be used for hiking in the wilderness. The thick protective soles will ensure that your dog’s paws are protected from the worst mother nature has to offer. Each boot is securely attached to your dog’s legs with a sturdy strap that uses Velcro and they are available in two sizes too for perfect fitment (extra small and large).
There are some pretty awesome safety features built into these boots that are worth taking into account. Every boot has several led lights built into it that will illuminate at night. There are even red ones on the front and green ones on the back so you can tell which direction your dog is moving in when they are out of sight. There are also several reflective strips along the side of each boot for further visibility in low light conditions.
The only thing that may be an issue with these boots for some people is the price. At around $50 they’re not exactly cheap, but they’re exceptionally well made and long lasting. Some other products have a limited lifespan (and will need replacing), but these things are going to stand the test of time.
They are hands down the best dog boots on the market in 2018, and if you’ve got the budget for them we highly recommend you add them to the very top of your shortlist.
4 Other Picks for Really Good Dog Boots
In this section, we are going to recommend a few other dog boots we came across during our research for this article that are excellent options in their respective categories.
Hiking: My Busy Dog Water Resistant Reflective Anti-Slip Dog Boots
The final product on our list is one of our favorites. We almost made this our overall pick so if you liked what we chose earlier (but were put off by the price) then these may be of interest to you.
They are made of thick and rugged rubber that has an excellent amount of grip along the entire underside of the boot. They connect securely to your dog with a reliable strap based locking mechanism and they are completely water resistant too.
They’re still not exactly cheap at around $35, but considering the quality of product you’re receiving, they’re excellent value for money.
Fleece: Ethical Pet Fashion Lookin’ Good Fleece Boots
These dog boots are an ethically made product that are mainly designed for indoor use. They will protect your flooring from your dog, and they will protect your dog from your flooring.
They can be used in outdoor situations too if you wish (according to the manufacturer), but honestly, if you’re looking for an outdoor product there are better options on this list.
They’re super soft and they are made from a durable comfortable material that dogs are not going to have a problem with wearing. Each boot has a large circular pad on the bottom that provides excellent grip even on the slippiest of flooring types. They are secured to the foot with a pull strap mechanism and they’re easy to clean too.
At only around $6 they are one of the cheapest products on this list, and if you’re looking for an indoor product then they are a bargain in our opinion.
Snow: Ethical Pet Fashion Lookin’ Good Extreme All Weather Boots
This is the second product on our list from Ethical Pet and it’s a great option for dog owners who need protection from ice and snow. In all honesty they are nowhere near as good as our overall top pick, but then again they are only $8 (instead of $50).
They are made from a polyester outer shell and the inside of each boot is lined with a thick and fluffy fleece lining for insulation and warmth. They’ve got exceptional amounts of grip thanks to their non-skid soles and the reflective straps on the side ensure visibility in low light situations. They look super cute with their adorable red color and they are available in 5 different sizes to ensure suitability for a variety breeds.
Waterproof: Pawz Waterproof Dog Boots
These adorable little dog boots are essentially the exact opposite of the product we have mentioned above. Instead of being thick, heavy duty, multiple use boots that stand the test of time, these are semi-disposable thin products with a very specific purpose.
They are elasticated boots that are made of a thin rubber waterproof material. They are exceptionally easy to take on and off and come in a pack of 12. They’re mainly used to protect your dog’s paws from the outside world when they have wounds that need to be kept clean. However, they can also be used to keep your house dry if you’re going for a walk in the rain.
So there you have it, all you need to know about the world of dog boots.
All of the products we have mentioned today are winners to have made it on to this list. If you decide to get any of them then we are sure that you’re not going to be disappointed.
They’re all a sure-fire way to ensure that your dog has happy feet, all year round.